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The Martial Arts Industry Association exists to help grow martial arts participation by helping school owners succeed. Many school owners are never exposed to the foundational business concepts necessary to run and grow a successful business. At MAIA, we can help fill that need, as we are made up of school owners who have walked in your shoes, know your struggles, and can help with strategies to elevate you from novice to a "blackbelt in business".

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5 Steps to Winning Workshops: Programming Product for Profit

maia student retention Jun 15, 2019

Programming product for profit is when you pick a retail item and create a workshop to go around that item. Examples could include, but are not limited to, a square hand target, focus paddle, body shield, Wavemaster or even a stretch rack.

            Hosting these workshops will not only increase retail sales and profitability, but will also increase retention. Students who spend money in your school today are less likely to quit tomorrow. Let’s dive in.

Step 1: Schedule a Day and Time for the Workshop

            In this example, we will often host square hand target workshops, as this is a simple-to-use item that anyone can benefit with from at-home training. We like to do these workshops on a Saturday from 11:00-noon. You can pick any day and time that will work for your schedule.

Step 2: Set a Limited Number of Spaces

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My 12 Rules for Training: Part 2

By Dave Kovar

 

In an earlier column, I discussed the first six rules of “My 12 Rules for Training.” They were:

  • Empty Your Cup
  • Be Present-Focused
  • Don’t Compare
  • Be Thorough With Your Warm-up
  • Focus on One Detail at a Time
  • Visualize the Application

This month we I’ll discuss rules 7-12. Here they are:

7) Embrace Fatigue. As legendary pro-football coach Vince Lombardi once said, “Poor endurance makes cowards of us all.”

Rarely do we perform as well when we become fatigued. Of course, from a fitness standpoint, training to fatigue helps us become better conditioned. But more importantly, it gets us to be comfortable being uncomfortable. The more we train fatigued, the easier it becomes to deal with it.

From a self-defense standpoint, it’s important to remember that chances are very good that if we ever have to defend ourselves, it will be when we are fatigued. If we are used to being in this state, it will be easier for us to call upon the...

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Allowing Revenue to Help Prioritize Your Time Management

By Christopher Rappold

 

There’s an old business adage that reads, “It costs seven times more to acquire a new customer than it does to sell to an existing customer.” And when it comes to operating a martial arts school, it has never been more true.

Think about it – what does it cost you in actual dollars to get a new student? Even if your school has great systems in place, and you only spend time, effort and energy doing low- or no-cost activities, you have to admit that it is still labor intensive.

Now, contrast that with taking steps to ensure that your students are making progress and moving towards their goals – something you should be doing anyway. When you compare actual time and money spent keeping students on track to their goals versus the efforts and money it takes to add a student, it may make you take a second look at how you prioritize your time.

Try some quick math. Review all the memberships you have in your school. How many...

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Combat the Summertime Slump by Winning the Retention Battle

By MAIA Executive Director Frank Silverman

 

In a recent column, I discussed the need for focusing on enrollments during the summer month. Even though summer enrollments are often less than stellar, it's important that we work towards getting new students.

I suggested ways to capture the low-hanging fruit: siblings and parents. Assuming you’re focused on new-member enrollment, a focus equal in importance during the summer is retention. It does no good to open the front door to a new student only to lose one through the back door.

There are quite a few reasons that summer retention is difficult. First, you are competing with the swimming pool and the season’s extended daylight hours. As much fun as it is to train in martial arts, in the summer months, staying out late and playing with friends is big competition.

There’s no getting around heat and nice weather being an issue for many students. Just as important is the fact that families break their normal...

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5 Mistakes that are Killing your Sparring Program

By Christopher Rappold

 

When I walk into a school and see two or three high-level students training at the prime time (4:00 pm to 8:00 pm), with no other members in site, my eyebrows raise. When I see a class full of students who are not performing the technical skills correctly, I get restless. Each of these extremes are different, but, in both cases, the school owners or instructors are probably making one of the 5 Mistakes that can sabotage a sparring program. So what are the 5 Mistakes? Well let’s take a look at each one so you can make certain you aren’t making them.

 

Mistake Number 1 – Teaching offense first.

 

Sparring is learning how to move with another partner. To do it well, a student needs to be able to relax. They can only relax if they feel safe. Instructors have to remember to perceive safety though the eyes and feelings of a beginner. Help everyone feel safe by teaching defense first.

 

Mistake Number 2 – Developing speed...

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How to Build a Great Demo Team!

By Justin L. Ford

 

The Many Benefits of a Great Demo Team

            Do you hear that?

            It's faint, but it sounds like a heartbeat.

            Is that. . .the sound of your school?

            While your students can be likened to the heart of your school, the reputation of your school can be considered the heartbeat. It is the echo of your success. If your “heartbeat” is weak, then your school is likely on the decline to death.

            Simply put, your reputation comes from word of mouth. And you should be aware that people will talk about everything! This includes the cleanliness and appearance of your school, what happens on the training floor and, especially, how your...

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Friendly Class Competition Reduces Basics' Boredom

By Deb Cupples

 

Repetition is critical to the improvement of technique. But finding ways to disguise the same old thing can diminish enthusiasm from both students and instructors. Injecting new life into old techniques, however, is not as difficult as you might think. Try this approach.

 

Inspiration sometimes comes from the most unassuming places. It may be hard to believe, but the inspiration I had for putting a new face on old teaching techniques came from a story that I was told, many years ago, in my teens. It’s a simple story about innovation to motivate out of desperation.

Here’s the story that crept back into my mind some 30-plus years later, and how it helped me keep the fire burning during classes when I’m not teaching anything new, but sewing down the seams of basic training.

I was told the following story when I was in my teens and it has stuck with me since then. It’s a simple story about a small town and how one man’s creativity...

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How Is Toughness Taught In the Modern Martial Arts School?

By Christopher Rappold

 

An ability to be tough is needed to pursue any high-level training. And while different coaches, teachers and instructors may have different definitions for what it is, for the purpose of this discussion, I will break down being, “tough” into two different categories. They are mental toughness and physical toughness, both of which have great value in sport and in life.

Elements of Mental Toughness

As I think of mental toughness, three things come to mind:

  1. The ability to problem-solve.
  2. The ability to handle frustration.
  3. A high degree of confidence in battle.

Within the confines of a martial arts class, how can you teach these important skills? A simple solution may be to set up a scenario that requires a student to come up with what a solution to a problem in a limited amount of time.

At times, we as instructors are in a rush maintain a schedule, and do not allow students to explore different options. We forget that this process, though not...

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5 Communication Hacks to Turn Your Leads into Students

By Cris Rodriguez

 

The 6 Key Stages

            If you’re struggling to get more students, if you’re confused with all of this social media mumbo-jumbo, if you’re frustrated by not being able to communicate to your leads why they should join your school – then this article was made for you.

            Sound like it’s too good to be true? Well, it’s not.

            Let me give you some context before we jump in.

            Every decision we make in our academy is based around the framework of our “Customer’s Journey.” There are 6 Key Stages that every martial arts student will go through on his/her customer journey in our schools:

            Key Stage...

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There Are So Many Ways to Save the Upcoming Summer!

By Kathy Olevsky

 

I've been operating a martial arts school full time for 45 years. I think I may have made every mistake that can be made in this business. The reason I'm still in business, I believe, is because I asked for help. I learned quickly that others before me had already found solutions. In this reality-based column, I'll point out key mistakes I made in my business career, which are common errors among school owners, both large and small, throughout our industry. Then I’ll share the solutions I applied to overcome them.

 

 

If you’re looking back on last summer and remembering that it was not a good business season, there is still time to make changes what will allow you to generate income during this upcoming summer season.

As school owners, we often look for new students and opportunities to find leads to those new students. In many schools, those leads dry up a bit over the course of the summer months. If this is the case for your school,...

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